More Train Rides, Seaside Weekends, and Too Much Food

December 4, 2013 § 2 Comments

Monza didn’t see much of me this past week: got back from Venice late Friday night, woke up too early on Saturday morning and taught four lessons, and then headed straight to the train station to catch a ride down to Ancona (my first Italo train ride- I’m sold!).

Home, sweet, home.  It feels like pre-all-of-this-teaching-life stuff.  Long lunches at the usual tables in the usual osteria‘s, dinners with Mr. Italian’s Father and his husky, hot pastries and strong cappuccino‘s at the bar in the piazza, sunrises over the sea, warm houses, and hills all around you.

Also, this time, bagels.  To flip the norm of me always baking foreign foods for Mr. Italian, this time Mr. Italian greeted me with a plate of home-made bagels:


Not sure where the thought came from, nor will I indicate them on the How Hard Am I? bagel scale, but it was sweet.  I’m pretty sure this is the first time the man has ever put on an apron; made me feel warm’n’fuzzy on the inside.  To match this feeling of fuzziness was a bottle of rose’ waiting for me:


In addition to a heavenly cherry-chocolate wine (don’t judge, it’s the best thing I have ever put in my mouth), this pretty much provided us with the diet for the weekend.  Add a few more desserts and you’re set.

Sunday morning gave us the false promise of sunshine, but by the time that the clouds rolled in, I had already made up my mind to take a walk around a lake.  I thought that this was a simple, reasonable request, but instead we drove around for a while and got lot in the Marche countryside.  But that’s alright because we stumbled upon many sheep:

, played with snow (did I mention that the sun changed its mind?) in abandoned fields:

, and enjoyed the white landscape:

To make up for the lack of promenade, we went to our favorite food stand in the world, near the grotte di Frasassi.  After stuffing ourselves with hearty mountain food, we took a walk along the road that leads to the caves, for it was closed to traffic due to a flood that swept through the valley last week and knocked away parts of the road.  It was surreal to see a couple of iron stairs disappear into nothingness, or parts of the sidewalk simply gone, and the raging river below you.  Pretty cool.  And scary.

Then it was time to attend a private toast (and deliver an improv speech!) at my Adopted Ancona Babbo’s art gallery/store.  And the rest of the weekend consisted of more food, more strolls, more cliffs, more big waves crashing against the shore, and a little bit of art.  I’m not a fan of putting up pictures of unfinished art, but… I’m even less a fan of starting a painting one day, not having enough time to finish it, and then having to wait three weeks before having the opportunity to come back and finish.  That’s just cruel.  So… first few layers of splatters have given rise to an autumn scene in Milano:


To be finished during Christmas break.

And now… time to pack (again), hop on a train (again) in the middle of the night, and head back up to Milano.  Lessons in the morning.  I’m already ready to collapse into bed, not sure how I will manage to stay up for the next 15 hours before a nap is possible.  Vediamo.


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